In a ballot count that went late into election night, Oakley City Council incumbents Kevin Romick and Pat Anderson retained their seats, while planning commissioner Jim Frazier won a first-time spot on the council.
The local issues of economic growth, city blight and police protection figured prominently in the council race and seemed to resonate with constituents, who elected first-time candidate Frazier with more than 25 percent of the vote. But on a night filled with excitement and anticipation, he admitted the win was bittersweet.
This was Erik's (Nunn) and my dream, said Frazier of Erik Nunn, who was killed in a plane crash in June. I wanted to be on the City Council and he wanted to be supervisor. So yes, it's a little sad, too. But I am grateful that the community saw that I really do enjoy helping people and being part of the solution for a greater Oakley, and I look forward to serving them.
Romick, a veteran to local campaigns, said he wasn't surprised by the outcome of the election.
I was confident in the results, said Romick, who garnered 19 percent of the electorate. And I want to thank the voters of Oakley for re-electing me. My plan is to continue to do what I have done for the last few years. Oakley's economic situation is first and foremost, but as we battle the tide of economic pessimism that has swept the country, it will be difficult to do. For now, we will just do our best to remain on firm ground.
Incumbent Pat Anderson, who garnered more than 17 percent of the votes, was out of town at press time and unavailable for comment.
First-time candidates Bob Caughron and Rodger McKeon won 7 and 17 percent of the votes, respectively. Incumbent Brad Nix came in with 14 percent. As city law dictates, Frazier will give up his planning commission seat to take a council chair. Public notices will be posted for the open planning commission spot. Frazier, Romick and Anderson will be sworn in during a regularly scheduled December City Council meeting.